The next thing I asked was, “How did it feel just being there?” Every intern stated that there were nothing but good vibes at the festival. The energy was high all day and the community was booming. Many of the interns said that it felt very family oriented being there. It felt like everyone there was just a part of a huge family and it was amazing, gratifying, and stimulating being with the whole community. One intern stated after the pandemic has been going on for so long, it felt good to be connected to his culture again. It was good hospitality. One intern mentioned it just felt like a judgment free zone that was just full of black excellence. It was a great atmosphere with good attitudes all around that celebrated our ancestors as they should be celebrated. It was nothing she has ever experienced before.
The next question I asked was directed towards our returning interns that got to experience our grand opening Juneteenth festival, as well as the 2022 festival. I asked them, “How was the atmosphere different from last year's festival?” Overall, there were a lot more people. It once again just felt like one gigantic family getting together. They said it felt like they could be closer and more inclusive because Covid is dying down a bit more. They also felt there was more community involvement this time around. It just felt more close-knit. One intern stated that she felt more exposed to For Oak Cliff’s mission compared to last year just being introduced to For Oak Cliff at all.
I then asked the new interns, “What did it feel like attending your first For Oak Cliff Juneteenth festival?” One intern said, “It opened a new aspect of the community that I have never seen before. It was good seeing everyone get along, helping people, and being a part of it. It was a great experience.” The others said it was a fun and exciting experience. One stated that it was very structured, but also light-hearted. It was great communication, even if there was a conflict it got solved really easily. They also talked about how the clean up was very smooth sailing because everyone was so adamant to help. It was low stress and it was not too overwhelming.
Overall, the Juneteenth festival was an excellent time for everyone to come together and celebrate each other and our ancestors. The Juneteenth festival was a success and if you would like the opportunity to experience an awesome For Oak Cliff festival, be sure to be in attendance at the annual Back to School Festival taking place on August 13, 2022!